Save $10 on Taste of Toronto Tickets, July 24-27

Taste400wOpenTable diners are invited to save as they taste extraordinary! Featuring Toronto’s most celebrated chefs and rising stars, foodie entertainment and a boutique food & drink market, Taste of Toronto is the 1st annual celebration of everything we love about food.

Taste is considered the world’s greatest restaurant festival. From just one show in London 10 years ago, Taste has rapidly grown to become part of the social season for foodies, restaurant-lovers, and chef groupies in close to 20 different cities around the globe. Wherever it is in the world, Taste represents foodie heaven: stunning food prepared by the city’s greatest restaurants, world famous chefs, superb drink, and outstanding entertainment — set in stunning outdoor surroundings. Continue Reading

OpenTable Restaurant Reviews Reveal #DinersChoice Top 30 Best BBQ Restaurants in America

Best BBQIn a nod to our nation’s longstanding love affair with barbecuing, we are pleased to honor the 2014 Diners’ Choice Award winners for the Top 30 Best Barbecue Restaurants in America. These awards reflect the combined opinions of more than 5 million restaurant reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for approximately 19,000 restaurants in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Showcasing regional styles and techniques, including dry rubs and wet brines, the winning eateries use a balance of nuanced spices and smoke to bring forth complex flavors in their barbecue dishes. The complete list includes notable restaurants in 12 states and Washington, D.C., such as Dinosaur Bar-B-Que in Harlem, Lambert’s Downtown BBQ in Austin, and Wexler’s in San Francisco. California has six award winners, followed by Illinois and New York with five each, Texas with four, and Ohio with two. Arizona, Colorado, Maryland, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, D.C., and Wisconsin are also represented. Continue Reading

Stoic & Genuine Opens in Denver’s Historic Union Station: No Ocean, No Worries

Denver’s famous Union Station has gotten a much-needed renovation, and, along with stunning stores and a swank new hotel, some of the city’s best restaurateurs are setting up shop in the station, including Beth Gruitch and business partner and James Beard Award winner Jennifer Jasinski. The pair, who also operate Bistro Vendome, Euclid Hall, and Rioja, have opened Stoic & Genuine, a multi-coastal seafood and oyster house. Featuring fresh seafood that is flown in daily, as well as oysters harvested exclusively for the eatery, an amazing wine and craft beer program, an array of grower’s Champagne, and a unique granita bar, Stoic & Genuine is named for Jasinki’s husband Max (stoic) and executive chef Jorel Pierce (genuine), and they aim to deliver food and hospitality that reflects those principles.

The selection of granitas are meant to complement both seafood dishes, such as oysters, and a number of cocktails. Gruitch revealed that the concept for the granita offerings came about at Jasinki’s wedding a couple of years ago. She says, “We’ve taken it one step further, by presenting both savory and sweet options. The flavors are incredibly intense — plus, it keeps your drink cold so its perfect.” Her current favorites include the Sherry Amontillado (“Sherry and oysters are a perfect match!”) and the strawberry Champagne granita. “We simply top it with more bubbles,” she notes, “and it’s a really nice alternative to a mimosa or a Bellini.”

In a nod to Denver’s sporty, health-conscious foodies, Stoic & Genuine‘s menu is a real reflection of how Gruitch and Jasinski like to eat. Gruitch says, “I love the simplicity of it. It’s refreshing and all the flavors are there. Jen’s cooking is really light, yet there’s a ton of flavor there.”

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Trending on Restaurant Reviews: Radishes

radishThe modest radish has gotten a raise in profile recently, thanks to creative chefs. A root vegetable that dates back thousands of years, the radish hasn’t been highly revered in American cuisine (see Wind, Gone with The) — until now . This speedy growing garden staple is a spicy, crunchy delight and has moved beyond mere garden marker and salad ingredient to stand-alone star of many dishes. One of my first fine dining experiences featured a tray of crudités that included some ruby radishes. I took a bite of one, and realized it was the second hottest thing I’d ever eaten (The first was a spoonful of Chinese mustard that my jokester brothers conned me into eating!). My tongue burned, I winced, and I didn’t touch a radish again for at least a decade. Now, my palate has expanded, and so has our choice of radish; beyond just the ubiquitous red radish, chefs have embraced many heirloom varieties, including black, French breakfast, icicle, and watermelon. In addition to showcasing the fresh flavors of raw radishes, this member of the cabbage family is being served roasted, coated in butter (Hello, NoMad!), grilled, on crostini, and in ice cream! Find out which restaurants have diners raving about radishes in recent reviews.

Aveline, San Francisco, California: “We split two desserts: one, dirt, made with radishes and oat ice cream, was stimulating.”

* Babbo Ristorante, New York, New York: “We had the tasting menu with wine pairings, and everything was delicious. My first roasted radish ever.”

The Bachelor Farmer, Minneapolis, Minnesota: “The food was amazing, even down to the crackers with radishes and salt before the meal.”

Cafe Spiaggia, Chicago, Illinois: “First, the outstanding food: ricotta with radish and asparagus served in a tiny jar with crostini — fabulous; roasted radish salad — great; pasta with garbanzo beans and pancetta, pork chop with polenta — both wonderful.”

Cucina 24, Asheville, North Carolina: “Great apps…..French breakfast radishes in garlic butter!”

Doi Moi, Washington, D.C.:  “The radish cakes were very flavorful and perfectly crispy and hot.”

Farmstead Grill, Baltimore, Maryland: “Chicken with salad — panko-crusted chicken on kale with marvelous dressing; slivered radishes on toast; rosemary multicolored carrots — swoon-worthy vegetables. Many excellent vegan and vegetarian options.”

Flyte World Dining and Wine, Nashville, Tennessee: “I love the idea of ‘farm to table’, but what the chef did with the local produce was unusual and delicious. The charred-radish salad made me rethink radishes.”

Heartland Restaurant and Farm Direct Market, St. Paul, Minnesota: “The amuse bouche was a gorgeous bite of radish chip similar to a taco.”

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